Power, Conflict and Democracy(PCD)

This project has been finalised. 

I was Co-I on the project Power, Conflict and Democracy(PCD): The Role of Democracy in the Context of Power and Conflict in Indonesia and Sri Lanka (2010-2011), funded by the Norwegian Program for Development, Research and Education (NUFUPRO-2007/10209). The project was headed by Kristian Stokke and Olle Törnquist at the University of Oslo and was a collaboration between the University of Oslo, the University of Colombo in Sri Lanka, and Gadjah Mada University in Indonesia. The project had two overarching goals:

  • Through the lens of power, conflict and democracy, to provide critical analysis of quality of democracy in Indonesia and Sri Lanka.
  • Through collaborative activities and researcher training programmes, contribute to capacity building in Indonesia and Sri Lanka. It also aimed to develop an Indonesia-based online open access journal for a domestic and international audiences (Power, Conflict and Democracy Journal).

Civic Associations and Democratisation 

I was lead on the sub-section studying the impact of participatory development mechanisms on democracy in Indonesia. I focused on the following questions:

  • Does community participation in civic associations strengthen democracy?
  • How (if at all) do participatory development programs contribute to democratization in Indonesia?

Findings 

The focus was on analysing strategies for bottom-up mobilisation in various development planning programmes: Musrenbang, a government-run programme, and the Kecamatan Development Program (KDP), a World Bank Programme. I also assessed the contrasts with this form of bottom-up civic mobilisation with more traditional modes of mobilisation, i.e. labour organising. The analysis focuses on the democratising aspects of these sectors, arguing that participation and mobilisation lacks the necessary popular foundations as well as organisational capacities that are necessary for participatory institutions to effectively enhance democracy. I argue that associational density in and of itself is a poor indicator for democracy, especially in relation to democratic consolidation in new democracies. Article available here: Sindre_PCD 2012